(Metro Creative Connection)

(Metro Creative Connection)

Learn and Play group one of many programs the Family Resource Network provides to Ponoka

The Family Resource Network has programs and supports available to help children, youth, and families in the Ponoka area.

Family Resource Networks (FRNs) are available throughout Alberta, due to a shift in funding to ensure consistent services are available across the province for families with children aged 0 to 18.

The FRN utilizes a Hub and Spoke model collaborating with BGC Wetaskiwin, McMan Central, and Red Deer Native Friendship Society as well as other community partners to offer individual and group-based programs.

Early Child and Youth Development groups are designed to support cultural growth, anger management, coping strategies, and substance abuse, as well as social skills such as Learn and Play. Learn and Play is in Ponoka every Tuesday at the Hudson’s Green Centre from 10:30 am to 12 pm. Parents and older siblings are welcome at the Learn and Play. To register call or text 780-360-4124.

According to Dixie McLeod, Senior Practice Specialist for McMan, Learn and Play Ponoka was created to help young children ages zero to six with gross motor play, fine motor play, literacy, and social connection.

Enrichment Program provides solution-focused support to families and youth to improve personal/family functioning and caregiver capacity.

Family Support helps parents develop resiliency related to family wellness.

Home Visitation supports families to provide a nurturing, safe environment for their children from pregnancy to age six.

Parent Education various education programs including Connect, Triple P, and Active Parenting.

The FRN ensures to use locations such as the Ponoka Youth Centre and the Ponoka Jubilee Library, other community spaces, and individual family homes to reduce barriers for individuals connecting for services. Through the FRN Hub at BGC Wetaskiwin, individuals can make one phone call to connect to programs as well as other community resources.

According to Kathy Hodges, Director of Family Programs at BGC Wetaskiwin, the FRN serves Wetaskiwin, Ponoka, Rimbey, and surrounding areas and is able to meet families where they are at, whether that means meeting them in their home or where they feel comfortable and safe.

“We want to continue to successfully collaborate with current programs and agencies in Ponoka and support a strong community through strong families,” said Hodges.

Although the FRN has officially been in Ponoka for two years, according to Hodges, BGC Wetaskiwin has been supporting families in Ponoka through the Enrichment Program for over 10 years and hopes to continue to be a part of the community of Ponoka for years to come.

To access the Family Resource Network Programs, call 780-352-4643, extension 28, or email kathryn@wetaskiwinyouth.ca.


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